Congressional Research Service Reports - 624 Matching Results

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Immigration: The Effects on Low-Skilled and High-Skilled Native-Born Workers

Description: The report opens with a discussion of how to analyze the impact of immigrants on the pay and job opportunities of native-born workers. It then uses this framework to examine and interpret the empirical literature on the subject. The report concludes with a discussion of policy implications.
Date: April 13, 2010
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Tort Claims Act

Description: The Federal Tort Claims Act is the statute by which the United States authorizes tort suits to be brought against itself. With exceptions, it makes the United States liable for injuries caused by the negligent or wrongful act or omission of any federal employee acting within the scope of his employment, in accordance with the law of the state where the act or omission occurred. This report discusses, among other things, the application of the Feres doctrine to suits for injuries caused by medical malpractice in the military, the prohibition of suits by victims of atomic testing, Supreme Court cases interpreting the discretionary function exception, the extent to which federal employees may be held liable for torts they commit in the scope of their employment, and the government contractor defense to products liability design defect suits.
Date: April 27, 2009
Creator: Cohen, Henry & Cohen, Henry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Small Business Administration HUBZone Program

Description: The Small Business Administration (SBA) administers several programs to support small businesses, including the Historically Underutilized Business Zone Empowerment Contracting (HUBZone) program. The HUBZone program is a small business federal contracting assistance program "whose primary objective is job creation and increasing capital investment in distressed communities." This report examines the arguments presented both for and against targeting assistance to geographic areas with specified characteristics, such as low income, high poverty, or high unemployment, as opposed to providing assistance to people or businesses with specified characteristics. It then assesses the arguments presented both for and against the creation and continuation of the HUBZone program.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Job Growth During the Recovery

Description: Congress in recent years passed a number of bills intended in part to jump-start a recovery in the labor market from the recession that began in December 2007. Policymakers are interested in how employment has responded to stimulus measures to determine how effective the legislation has been and to decide whether additional job creation legislation is warranted. This report discusses this topic in brief.
Date: September 30, 2010
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Winter Fuels Outlook 2010-2011

Description: This report discusses findings gleaned through the Energy Information Administration's (EIA) publication titled Short-Term Energy and Winter Fuels Outlook (STEWFO) for the 2010-2011 winter heating season. STEWFO projects how much American consumers should expect to see heating expenditures rise during the 2010-2011 winter season. These findings take into account the currently slow economic growth, high unemployment numbers, and uncertainty regarding the federal funding of the Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).
Date: October 29, 2010
Creator: Pirog, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pay Equity Legislation

Description: This report begins by showing the trend in the male-female wage gap and by examining the explanations that have been offered for its enduring presence. It next discusses the major laws directed at eliminating sex-based wage discrimination as well as relevant federal court cases. The report closes with a description of pay equity legislation that has been considered by Congress in recent years, including bills introduced in the 111th Congress.
Date: September 20, 2010
Creator: Feder, Jody & Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Proposed Colombia Free Trade Agreement: Labor Issues

Description: This report examines three labor issues and arguments related to the pending U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement (CFTA): violence against trade unionists; impunity (accountability for or punishment of the perpetrators); and worker rights protections for Colombians. This report addresses this issue at length, including the arguments for and against the agreement, as well as general U.S.-Colombia economic relations.
Date: November 24, 2008
Creator: Bolle, Mary Jane
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

401(k) Plans and Retirement Savings: Issues for Congress

Description: Over the past 25 years, defined contribution (DC) plans - including 401(k) plans - have become the most prevalent form of employer-sponsored retirement plan in the United States. This report describes seven major policy issues with respect to defined contribution plans: 1) access to employer-sponsored retirement plans; 2) participation in employer-sponsored plans; 3) contribution rates; 4) investment choices; 5) fee disclosure; 6) leakage from retirement savings; and 7) converting retirement savings into income.
Date: July 14, 2009
Creator: Purcell, Patrick & Topoleski, John J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN)

Description: Congress has passed legislation to facilitate the reemployment of workers who through no fault of their own are let go by their employers. Among these laws is the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act, P.L. 100-379, enacted in 1988. This report discusses the WARN Act in brief, especially as related to Congress's renewed interest in the Act due to the current financial crises and recession.
Date: July 9, 2009
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Labor Market during the Great Depression and the Current Recession

Description: This report analyzes the labor market experiences of workers during the 1930s, which encompassed the almost five years of the Great Depression. Because it was a period very distant and different from today, considerable time is devoted to examining the employment and unemployment measures available at that time. The report ends by comparing the labor market conditions of the 1930s with those encountered by workers thus far during the recession that began in December 2007.
Date: June 19, 2009
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Leave Benefits in the United States

Description: This report begins by reviewing the federal statutes that pertain directly or indirectly to employer provision of leave benefits for any purpose, including a discussion of the California and New Jersey family leave insurance programs. The report than examines the incidence of different types of paid leave that U.S. employers voluntarily provide as part of an employee's total compensation (wages and benefits). The report closes with results from a federal government survey of the average direct cost to business of different types of leave.
Date: June 5, 2009
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress

Description: Trafficking in persons (TIP) for the purposes of exploitation is believed to be one of the most prolific areas of international criminal activity and is of significant concern to the United States and the international community. This report discusses the global and ongoing problem of TIP in detail, as well as anti-TIP programs and U.S. and international efforts to combat TIP.
Date: July 2, 2009
Creator: Wyler, Liana Sun; Siskin, Alison & Seelke, Clare Ribando
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force

Description: The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. Many in the scientific community maintain that in order to compete with countries that are rapidly expanding their scientific and technological capabilities, the country needs to bring to the United States those whose skills will benefit society and will enable us to compete in the new-technology based global economy. This report analyzes this issue in detail and includes discussion of related legislation.
Date: July 23, 2008
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Immigration: The Effects on Low-Skilled and High-Skilled Native-Born Workers

Description: The report opens with a discussion of how to analyze the impact of immigrants on the pay and job opportunities of native-born workers. It then uses this framework to examine and interpret the empirical literature on the subject. The report concludes with a discussion of policy implications.
Date: January 24, 2008
Creator: Levine, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Davis-Bacon: The Act and the Literature

Description: The Davis-Bacon Act of 1931, as amended, requires that contractors, engaging in certain federal contract construction, pay workers on such projects not less than the locally prevailing wage for comparable work. In addition, such contractors are required to file payroll reports and to meet other administrative and labor standards requirements. Included in this report is a bibliography of published materials dealing with the Davis-Bacon Act and related issues.
Date: November 13, 2007
Creator: Whittaker, William G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Employees: Pay and Pension Increases Since 1969

Description: Under the terms of the Federal Employees' Pay Comparability Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-509), pay for civilian federal employees is adjusted each year to keep the salaries of federal workers competitive with comparable occupations in the private sector. The annual increases in federal employee pay are based on changes in the cash compensation paid to workers in the private sector, as measured by the ECI. Under certain circumstances, the President may limit the annual increase in federal pay by executive order. Federal law also requires Social Security benefits and the pensions paid to retired federal employees to be adjusted each year. The COLAs for both Social Security and civil service pensions are based on the rate of inflation as measured by the CPI.
Date: January 8, 2009
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security and Medicare Taxes and Premiums: Fact Sheet

Description: Financing for social security -- Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance -- and the Hospital Insurance part of Medicare is provided primarily by taxes levied on wages and net self-employment income. Financing for the Supplementary Medical Insurance portion of Medicare is provided by premiums from enrollees and payments from the government. This report describes these taxes and premiums.
Date: January 13, 2004
Creator: Nuschler, Dawn
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Davis-Bacon Act: Institutional Evolution and Public Policy

Description: This report examines policy issues the Davis-Bacon Act has sparked through the years and which remain a part of the Davis-Bacon debate of the 1990s. These include such questions as: wage rate determination procedures, reporting requirements under the Copeland Act, an appropriate threshold for activation of the statute, interagency relationships with respect to Davis-Bacon enforcement and compliance activity, administrative or judicial appeals procedures, the use of "helpers" and other low-skilled workers on covered projects, and the right of a President to suspend the statute as well as the conditions under which such a suspension may occur. That the fundamental premise of the Act remains in contention after 60 years may be, itself, part of the public policy debate.
Date: November 30, 2007
Creator: Whittaker, William G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation: A Fact Sheet

Description: The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) is a federal government agency established in 1974 by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) (P.L. 93- 406). It was created to protect the pensions of participants and beneficiaries covered by private sector, defined benefit (DB) plans. These pension plans provide a specified monthly benefit at retirement, usually either a percent of salary or a flat dollar amount multiplied by years of service. Defined contribution plans, such as ยง401(k) plans, are not insured. The PBGC is chaired by the Secretary of Labor, with the Secretaries of Treasury and Commerce serving as board members.
Date: January 29, 2008
Creator: Topoleski, John J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: Raising the Retirement Age Background and Issues

Description: The Social Security "full retirement age" will gradually rise from 65 to 67 beginning with people who attain age 62 in 2000 (i.e., those born in 1938). Early retirement benefits will still be available beginning at age 62, but at lower levels. To help solve Social Security's long-range financing problems, it has been proposed that these ages be raised further.
Date: June 24, 2002
Creator: Kollmann, Geoffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: The Cost-of-Living Adjustment in January 2009

Description: The 5.8% COLA payable in January 2009 was triggered by the rise in the CPI-W from the third quarter of 2007 to the third quarter of 2008. This COLA triggers identical percentage increases in Supplemental Security Income (SSI), veterans' pensions, and railroad retirement benefits, and causes other changes in the Social Security program. Although COLAs under the federal Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and the federal military retirement program are not triggered by the Social Security COLA, these programs use the same measuring period and formula for computing their COLAs. Their recipients will also receive a 5.8% COLA in January 2009.
Date: October 16, 2008
Creator: Sidor, Gary
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Federal Civil Service Annuities

Description: Cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) are based on the rate of inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W). All CSRS retirees and survivors receive COLAs. Under FERS, however, non-disabled retirees under age 62 do not receive COLAs. This report discusses cost-of-living adjustments for government retirees, as well as related legislation.
Date: October 16, 2008
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: Coverage of Household Workers - A Fact Sheet

Description: On October 22, 1994, President Clinton signed legislation (P.L. 103-387) that changes social security coverage of household workers. The new law changed the threshold to a yearly amount and raised it (to $1,000 in 1994, indexed thereafter to average wage growth-it became $1,100 in 1998, 1,200 in 2000, and 1,300 in 2001). It remains at $1,300 in 2002. In addition, the new law exempted most domestic workers under age 18, and provided that Social Security and unemployment taxes will be reported on the employer's annual federal tax return.
Date: January 3, 2002
Creator: Kollmann, Geoffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Fair Labor Standards Act: Changes Made by the 101st Congress and Their Implications

Description: Initially, in the 101st Congress, a measure to increase federal minimum wage (and to make numerous other changes in the FLSA) was passed by both the House and the Senate but, in June 1989, it was vetoed by President Bush. An effort by the House to override the President's veto was unsuccessful. Later, new legislation was introduced and approved both by the House and the Senate. On November 17, 1989, President Bush signed the bill (P.L. 101-107).
Date: January 1, 1991
Creator: Whittaker, William G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department